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Premiership Rugby

Leonard takes his place on the Quins bench

A Gallagher Premiership Rugby ball

Fellow England hero Will Greenwood was also named in the original line up on Thursday, but the centre failed a late fitness test on a shoulder injury he picked up playing for England in the Rugby World Cup.

NEC Harlequins make just two changes to the starting XV from the game that fell to Bath last week.

Mike Worsley returns from sickness and takes the place of Ceri Jones at loosehead prop, and fly-half Andy Dunne replaces Paul Burke who was injured last weekend.

In addition to Jason Leonard coming onto the bench, NEC Harlequins also have Ace Tiatia returning to the 22-man squad following his recovery from the calf injury he suffered against Newcastle on 6th October.

"This is a hugely important game for us," said NEC Harlequins boss Mark Evans.

"This is the half-way point in the season and a win here will consolidate our position in the top half of the table, and enhance our prospects of making the end of season play offs.

"It has been a great week for English Rugby following the teams victory in the World Cup Final last Saturday and it has been tremendous to have Will and Jase back amongst the squad.

"Will was desperately keen to play on Saturday, and was very disappointed when he failed the fitness test this morning. It is important not to take risks with any player and our priority is to get Will back in a NEC Harlequins shirt when he is fully fit.

"This is the third time in the last five weeks that we have faced Leeds Tykes, so it would be fair to say we know each other very well.

"As with the previous encounters, it will be a very close game, with domination of the tackle area being crucial.

"We are looking forward to the challenge, and looking forward to playing in front of our own tremendous supporters at the Stoop."

NEC Harlequins: 15 Josh Taumalolo, 14 Simon Keogh, 13 Chris Bell, 12 Mel Deane, 11 Ugo Monye, 10 Andy Dunne, 9 Ben Willis, 8 Tony Diprose, 7 Andre Vos, 6 Pat Sanderson, 5 Jim Evans, 4 Bill Davison, 3 Jon Dawson, 2 Tani Fuga, 1 Mike Worsley.Replacements: 16 Ace Tiatia, 17 Ceri Jones, 18 Jason Leonard, 19 Karl Rudzki, 20 Roy Winters, 21 Rob Jewell, 22 Gavin Duffy.

Kick-off: 15.00 GMT


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